The first in a series of musings.
There has been much conversation about suicide since within only a week,
Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain both took their lives.
I am saddened. I have been thinking of the sorrow caused by their deaths and
many others who are left behind.
That said, I have been thinking of my story since the death of Robin Williams.
It started in 1971. That was the year that I became so
deathly ill from Crohn's Disease. When I was finally diagnosed, I weighed
about 88 pounds and had a temperature of 104° I remember that after arriving at
the University Hospital in Madison, WI, I passed out on the hospital bed.
It was a long road of tests and treatments. I was in the hospital for over a month, but
it wasn't the physical disease that would plague me, but it's effects. The effects of
the medications would cause me difficulties for life. The physician wanted to
admit me to the psychiatric ward. (I didn't know that Prednisone and other medications
could cause me to become almost bipolar). I refused. I was afraid that I would never be
able to leave!
Finally, when I was discharged and home, I could go back to living my life. My
emotions went the spectrum. One moment I would be cleaning like a
woman possessed, next, I would fall into a slump without any hope.
I don't know what caused me to attempt suicide. I think I had an
argument with my boyfriend. I really don't remember. When I got home from our date,
I ingested all the medications that I owned and went to bed where I shared a room
with my younger sister.
My slurred words woke my sister up as I was saying, "Mamma, I don't wanna die, I don't
The ambulance was called and I was rushed to the local hospital. They pumped my stomach,
intubated me, used the defibrillator, and got my heart beating again, but I was unconscious.
The doctor, in his matter of fact way, told my mother that they did everything and if
I didn't wake up, I would never be the same.
Fast forward to 2113.
Speaking to my mother in her room at the healthcare center, mom was recalling how
each of her children had caused her so much pain, but that it was all worth it.
Of course she mentioned how I would try and kill myself, especially the time described above.
It was forty-two years before I was to hear of my mom's anguish. She told me about
the doctor and also about waiting. She told me that when the nurse came out and said I was
coming to, that it was the happiest news for her. I started to weep and told mom how sorry I was that I had caused everyone so much pain, especially her.